3 Easy Homemade Valentine’s Day Treats

3 easy homemade Valentine's Day treatsValentine’s Day is on the way and now is the perfect time to start planning. As a home cook or student of an online baking program, you may have considered homemade confections as the right way to say, “I love you.” You’re certainly on the right track, though coming up with ideas can be tricky. Here are a few cute and delicious ideas for all the romantic bakers out there:

White chocolate raspberry cheesecake
Cheesecake is one of those classic desserts that’s perfect for any occasion, and Valentine’s Day is no exception. Put a romantic spin on this favored treat by making a white chocolate-raspberry cheesecake. Start by preparing a chocolate cookie-crumble crust. Combine chocolate cookie crumbs in a bowl with butter and sugar. Once they are mixed together, press the crust into a pan. Beat together cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl until combined, then add sour cream, vanilla and flour. Finally, add the eggs then fold in chocolate chips. Pour the mixture into the crust.

The raspberry topping uses jam, which you can make yourself or buy. The real dazzler of this Valentine’s Day treat comes from the way you decorate with the jam. Place dots in concentric circles around the cheesecake. Then use a stick to swirl the jam. The idea is to pull some of the raspberry from one dot to the next, all the way around the circle. This creates heart-shaped jam. Bake the cheesecake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for about an hour.

The cheesecake you present to your loved one will be covered in delicious hearts.

Heart-shaped message cookies
Tell the apple of your eye how much you care by baking heart-shaped sugar cookies. Make them large enough that you can write on them later. You’ll need flour, baking soda, baking powder, butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla to complete the cookies. They bake at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes. Cut the cookies using a tool, then leave them to cool.

This is the fun part. Spread various colors of frosting over the cookies to mimic the hues used by those little heart-shaped candies. Once the icing hardens, you can write love notes on the cookies. Pick phrases like, “B Mine, UR A QT, BFF or Luv U.” These cookies are the perfect gift for all your loved ones because you can personalize the message.

Chocolate fudge
Make chocolate fudge over your stove and cut the final product into hearts using a cookie cutter. Melt butter, sugar and salt in a saucepan, then bring the mixture to a boil. Mix the ingredients continually for five minutes, then remove from the heat. Stir in marshmallows, vanilla extract, then chocolate chips until all are melted. Pour the liquid mixture into a buttered baking pan. Score the top of the fudge with a knife to create squares. Finally, let it cool completely, which takes about an hour.

When the fudge is set, you can take it out of the pan and cut it into hearts using the cookie cutter. Wrap the fudge by placing a piece of wax paper in a box and laying the treat on top.

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